In September 2020, the Wi-Fi Alliance announced that Wi-Fi 6 certification would provide wireless connectivity to devices based on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.11ax standard.
The new wireless fidelity (Wi-Fi) standard offers you massively improved Wi-Fi network performance in environments like airports, stadiums, and industrial parks.
The Wi-Fi 6 certified standard provides you with improved capacity, performance, and speed for more effective and efficient wireless connectivity.
Wi-Fi 6 was launched in 2019. In the following year, the wireless technology began appearing in several new products.
Meanwhile, in 2021, an advanced version of the Wi-Fi technology known as Wi-Fi 6E started appearing. This event could be an indicator of what you can expect from Wi-Fi 7.
In January 2021, the Wi-Fi Alliance announced during the virtual International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2021 that Wi-Fi 6E was available for devices operating in the 6 gigahertz (GHz) spectrum.
Meanwhile, International Data Corporation (IDC) Research Director Phil Solis reported that by 2022 almost 20% of Wi-Fi 6 devices would support 6 GHz. Supported devices will include:
- PCs and Macs
- VR products
The IEEE published a paper in the spring of 2020 related to “the Future Wi-Fi 7.”
A new report suggests that Wi-Fi 7 development could be ahead of schedule, so it’s possible to leverage it sooner. Intel Wireless Chief Technology Officer (CTO) Carlos Cordeiro shared in a video that Wi-Fi 7 will use Multi-Link Operation (MLO).
These are some of the reported upgrades you could get from Wi-Fi 7:
Wi-Fi 7 will reportedly provide up to five times the top data rate of Wi-Fi 6. This specification could provide you with speeds up to 30 gigabits per second.
Upgrades to Wi-Fi 6 in 2022 could improve data uploads, such as videos from your PC and mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets. Such speed boosts could carry over to Wi-Fi 7’s launch within the next few years.
Over time, the evolution of Wi-Fi technology could result in wireless technology being faster than wired tech.
MLO will also improve the reliability and latency of Wi-Fi-supported devices. You could use various channels to transmit the same packets for creating high Quality of Service (QoS) services in industrial applications such as factories.
Improved reliability could produce positive results, like better video streaming. This upgrade is critical with the emergence of high-definition (HD) and ultra-high definition (UHD) 4K, and 8K videos. It’s projected that by 2022, videos will comprise over 82% of all consumer web traffic.
The 2020 IEEE paper reported that people had made around 500 submissions to propose new features for Wi-Fi-7, also referred to as “IEEE 802.11be.”
IEEE shared that these features will revamp essential concepts of Wi-Fi operations, including:
- Multiple Access Point (Multi-AP) cooperation
- Forward-compatible physical layer (PHY) scalable sounding
Such features will function as a foundation for Wi-Fi development. The new Wi-Fi features are projected to be launched in 2024, which could also be the year Wi-Fi 7 is unveiled.
You should keep in mind that the Wi-Fi Alliance hasn’t officially referred to the new features with a tentative 2024 launch as Wi-Fi 7. While Wi-Fi 6 was launched in 2019, the group didn’t add the Wi-Fi 6 logo to certified products until the following year.
Increases in Wi-Fi networks’ capacity will be gradual and include upgrades to Wi-Fi 6. If you are a resident of the U.S.A. or an area part of the European Union (E.U.), take note that they could open up the wireless technology to radio transmission.
Boosting the speed of Wi-Fi technology is essential due to the proliferation of wireless applications you might be using. They include virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and online gaming.
In recent years, the demand for the Internet of Things (IoT) has skyrocketed. The IDC reported that the global market for IoT solutions had experienced a 20% annual growth rate.
Due to strict industry requirements and long-awaited upgrades, applications that run via current Wi-Fi 6-enabled wireless local area networks (WLANs) are challenging to support. Using these apps can be impractical.
The wireless market’s requirements have become exponentially greater than the capabilities of the latest WLAN standard (IEEE 802.11ac). Wi-Fi 7 is needed sooner rather than later.